Noise pollution is when a developed building or area produces loud sounds for a prolonged time. This can include everything from a concert in an outdoor space, a residential area with high traffic noise, or a house playing music loudly. Noise pollution can be harmful to animals and humans as it disrupts sleep and causes stress.
Light pollution is defined as excessive or disturbing light that may be harmful to animals or humans.This is when there are too many sources of artificial light in an outdoor area. These kinds of pollution disrupt the natural light of the sky at night, which can disrupt sleep and confuse animals. Further, excessive use of artificial lights demonstrates inefficient energy use and can be a dangerous distraction to nearby traffic.
How can I help?
Members of the community can help reduce noise and light pollution by using only necessary lighting and reducing the amount of noise you produce. Turn off lights when they are not in use or set up timers to automatically shut off and install outdoor lights minimally. Purchase fixtures listed on International Dark-Sky Association's Fixture Seal of Approval program that help to control the amount of light released from a fixture.
Find Athens-Clarke County noise and light ordinances to know how to help us reduce light and sound pollution.